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General News of Friday, 7 September 2012

Source: The Insight

Who is telling the truth? Is it the NDC or NPP?

As election day approaches, it is to expected that various political parties will be making claims and counter claims and the public may be caught wondering just which of them is telling the truth.

Currently, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the New Patriotic Party (NPP) are caught in a dispute over the performance of the Energy sector.

The NPP claims that the NDC has abandoned the energy sector and has refused to meet commitments made in the Presidential Campaign of 2008.

NPP spokesperson, ambrose Dery who also doubles as Member of parliament for Lawra Nandom has even claimed that the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) has breached the “no-flare” policy for gas and as a result Ghana has lost 2.3 billion dollars by the end of 2011.

the damage done to the NPP campaign by Ambrose Dery is substantial having regard to the fact that the issues he throws up have been loudly discussed and the public is fully aware of the facts.

Ghana has simply not been flaring gas and therefore the country could not have lost 2.3 billion dollars as a result.

Since Ghana started pumping oil in the Jubilee Field, gas has always been re-injected into the field reservoir.

Mr. Emmanuel Armah Buah, Deputy Minister for Energy, has confirmed that the only flaring which has been done is that which is technically necessary and unavoidable.

The claim by Dery that governance of the energy sector has declined has also turned out to be false. At the very least, the Petroleum Revenue Management Act has been passed and the Petroleum Commission has been established to regulate the upstream sector leaving the Ministry of Energy to focus attention on policy issues.

Perhaps, it can be argued that the establishment of national gas infrastructural project has delayed and that its early complain would have enhanced Ghana's capacity to exploit and utilize its gas and oil resources.

But this is far away from the claim that the “no-flare” policy has been abandoned and the energy sector is in decline.

Our politicians ought to know that the people of Ghana can no longer be taken for granted.